Super easy chicken curry packed with flavor and cooked in no time from scratch!
What’s for dinner? Chicken Curry! Forget jarred sauces….this recipe has a 5 star homemade sauce! A creamy, aromatic, coconut curry sauce made with minimal ingredients simmers around tender chicken pieces. You’ll be surprised at how GOOD this curry is!
Turn it into a spectacular dinner and serve it with our super soft naan bread to mop up that sauce!
A good chicken curry recipe usually involves either: making a curry paste from scratch, OR a long ingredients list like this amazing Tikka Masala. So, we came up with a recipe/solution to give you that Curry hit you’ve been craving for in an easier way.
This may NOT be an authentic Indian curry, BUT it does give you a satisfying hit of flavor and spices, AND it may just tick all of your curry craving boxes:
- No need to marinate chicken ✔️
- Shorter ingredients list without impacting flavors ✔️
- The option of using curry powder instead of SOME of the spices if that’s all you have on hand ✔️
- Fragrant coconut milk adds even MORE flavor ✔️
- Ready in less than 30 minutes. YES! It CAN be done! ✔️✔️✔️
WHAT CAN YOU PUT IN A CURRY?
All you need is love and the following ingredients:
- CHICKEN thighs OR breast pieces. I suggest using thighs as dark meat works better in this sauce and provides a richer flavor. If using breast, simply simmer for a shorter amount of time.
- FRESH AROMATICS: Garlic, ginger and onion start it off in the right direction.
- SPICES make a curry a curry, yes? For this reason, we do still recommend the main spices that give curry the best delicious taste, which are garam masala and ground cumin. Tumeric and others CAN be replaced with mild curry powder that may be hiding out at the back of your kitchen pantry.
- COCONUT MILK OR CREAM gives you the best cream sauce. You an substitute with heavy or thickened cream if that’s what you have!
- FRESH HERB like chopped cilantro to garnish at the end. Substitute with fresh parsley if you prefer.
HOW TO MAKE CURRY CHICKEN
FIRST, you’re going to toss the chicken pieces in a couple of spices. We may be making life easier, but you STILL WANT a great curry and it all starts here!
Once the chicken is fried, add in the spices and/or curry powder to release epic flavors before adding anything else. This step is essential for a great curry sauce. Plus, you get the bonus of browned bits frying onto the bottom of your pan. Browned bits = flavor!
LASTLY, add in your tomato puree (I always use Passata) and coconut milk or cream. Taste test and adjust seasonings to suit your palate if you need too! THAT’S IT!
Serve over plain rice OR garlic butter rice!
WHAT DOES CURRY CHICKEN TASTE LIKE?
Heaven! With all of the fresh aromatics, spices and optional brown sugar, curry has a unique rich and earthy flavor. Adjust the level of heat by adding more or less chili or curry powder.
HOW DO YOU THICKEN A CURRY?
You may find that you don’t need to thicken the curry sauce in this recipe as the combination of coconut milk/cream with tomato puree thickens it for you. For a thicker curry, however, you can either add in a couple tablespoons of tomato paste, OR a cornstarch slurry. Dissolve two teaspoons of cornstarch into one tablespoon of cold water. Stir the slurry into the sauce and let it simmer until the sauce thickens. It won’t take very long at all.
EASY CHICKEN CURRY
- 21 oz. chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon turmeric, (or curry powder)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder, or curry powder
- 15 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder, adjust to your taste preference
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 13.5 fl oz can coconut milk, or coconut cream
- Freshly chopped cilantro, to garnish
- In a bowl, toss chicken with 2 tablespoons of the oil and spices to evenly coat.
- Heat remaining oil in a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Sear chicken in batches until browned, about 3-4 minutes each side. Set aside and keep warm. (The chicken will finish cooking in the sauce.)
- Melt the butter in the same pan. Fry onion until soft (about 3 minutes), scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
- Add garlic and ginger; sauté until fragrant, about for 1 minute. Add in garam masala, cumin, ground coriander and turmeric (or curry powder). Cook stirring occasionally until fragrant, about 20 seconds.
- Add crushed tomatoes, chili powder, salt and sugar. Let simmer until slightly thickened, about 4 minutes.
- Stir in coconut milk/cream. Add chicken and juices back into the pan. Let simmer until chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thick, about 5 minutes.